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Into the wild

 

Americans use the word wilderness to mean, roughly speaking, 'a virgin, uncontaminated land on which man has never set foot’. There is no equivalent term in Italian, for the simple reason that we don’t have any virgin lands left. In actual fact, there are none left in America either and the concept of wilderness has been gradually shifting towards that of a wild area partially protected from the expanding whirlpool of civilisation. And yet such lands do exist even in Italy, and, would you believe, wild nature even has even claimed a place of its own in the Terre dei Savoia. In fact much of the area’s beauty is arguably to be attributed to the combination of the sophisticated royal residences and the wild shagginess of the natural landscape.  

 

The right way

 

You’re spoiled for choice, but then who’s complaining? The Po Valley and its first tributaries make up a rural social landscape of staggering beauty. The uplands carved out by the waterways create a varied, restless landscape, where charming views are intermingled with wild backgrounds. The Langhe, to the right of the Tanaro, form a living encyclopaedia composed of fluctuating horizons, colours and fragrances, which change with the seasons. The Roero hills, which are scattered across the left bank of the river, make up an archipelago of rocks, gullies and mysterious ravines. And, last but not least, the Maritime Alps form a bottomless treasure trove. It doesn’t matter whether you go on foot, by horse, coach, car, or bicycle: what matters is that you take your own path.

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